New bike warning beacons installed on Barbur Boulevard

New bike warning beacons installed on Barbur Boulevard »Play Video
(Photo by Lincoln Graves, KATU News)

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Cyclists who brave busy Barbur Boulevard now have some high-tech tools to help make them more visible.

The Oregon Department of Transportation has finished installing four new bicycle warning beacons on each end of the Newbury and Vermont bridges. Cyclists have long complained about how narrow those bridges are. Bike lanes disappear over the bridge deck, forcing cars and bicycles to share the same space.

"It's scary," said Rob, a cyclist we spoke with on Barbur Boulevard. "I think sometimes people don’t realize how close they are, maybe how fast they’re going."

As cyclists approach each bridge, they roll over sensors that have been installed in the bike lane. Those sensors trip the new warning beacons which warn drivers that a cyclist is either on the bridge or about move across it.

"I hope that people see the lights and maybe slow down a little bit and take notice there is a cyclist on the road ahead of them," said Rob.

According to the Oregon Department of Transportation, the beacons are the first of their kind in Oregon.